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Trains are troubled by 'dust' from Bradford stonemason's yard
Trains have been having problems braking because of ‘dust’ from an unauthorised stonemason’s yard, it has been revealed.
Network Rail has complained about large clouds from Dimensional Stone Sales in West Bowling, Bradford.
The ‘dust’ has been coating the rails and points, causing traction and braking problems, while the clouds have been obscuring the signals approaching Bradford Interchange, according to a new report by Bradford Council.
The Council is now taking enforcement action against the firm, which does not have planning permission to operate at its base, in Gordon Street. Dimensional Stone Sales, run by father and son team David and Tom Hirst, had been granted planning permission in 2010, on the condition that the company put together a drainage scheme for the site and had it approved by planners.
But this didn’t happen, so planning consent was never given.
Now officers have started a formal enforcement process against the company.
They have served a contravention notice on the firm demanding they comply with their conditions.
A report about the problems at the site has also gone to the Regulatory and Appeals Committee, which meets tomorrow.
It said: “Ongoing discussions with the site operator have, in respect of submitting information and implementing appropriate mitigation measures required by planning conditions, not resulted in a satisfactory conclusion.
“Therefore the enforcement process has progressed through the usual stages to a point where formal enforcement action is needed to resolve the issues.”
Tom Hirst, of Dimensional Stone Sales, said the firm had already taken steps to prevent its work affecting the railway line.
He said: “The Council raised it as dust but it’s not dust. The sawing work we do is wet cutting and a slight amount of vapour and spray comes off.
“In that water there’s an element of dust.”
He claimed the firm had moved its machinery indoors to head off the problem.
On the planning permission, Mr Hirst said: “We originally got permission in 2010 and a couple of issues have been raised by Bradford Council. We employed an architect agent to do the work for us, but this guy’s done nothing at all.”
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